Zotac H67-ITX: Sandy Bridge for Mini-ITX

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Fan Control

To test the board's fan control, we used the Smart Fan settings pictured below, connected 2400 RPM PWM fans to the two available fan headers, and placed the system on load using Prime95 while monitoring the CPU temperature and fan speeds using SpeedFan (Zotac does not provide any utilities of any kind for the H67-ITX).


Fan control settings.

Only the fan connected to the CPU Fan header varied in speed (the fan connected to the Sys Fan header ran at full speed the entire time), staying at about 400 RPM (this appeared to be the minimum of 20%) until the core temperature hit 40°C, starting about 5°C too early. The fan speed increased in a linear fashion, topping out at 2000 RPM at around 85°C which is an unusually high end point. Furthermore, CPU Fan header would not control 3-pin fans so it appears that voltage control isn't available on the H67-ITX.


SpeedFan screen with correlations inputted.

The latest beta version of SpeedFan allowed us to unlock PWM control on the Sys Fan header, giving it the same capabilities as the CPU Fan header. It also presented a few extra temperature sensors. The CPU sensor was of no use, staying at 124°C throughout testing, while those labeled System, AUX, and SMIOVT4/5/6 rose and fell together. By systematically providing extra cooling to various portions of the board, we eventually figured out that these set of sensors seemed to indicate the VRM temperature (the difference in values is likely just a calibration issue).

Cooling

To test the board's cooling, we used a Core i5-2500K stressed for ~15 minutes with Prime95. Temperatures of the boards' chipset and VRM heatsinks (if applicable) were monitored using a spot infrared thermometer. The highest temperatures were taken for comparison.

Given its small size and the board's unusually high load power consumption, it was no surprise that the board's VRM heatsink measured more than 10°C hotter than previous H67/P67 boards we've tested. It's not too big a deal though as the Zotac board chips will never be stressed through overclocking. It is also notable that some H67 mainboards like lack VRM cooling entirely, particularly the few mini-ITX models we've seen on the market thus far.



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